Sometimes I agree with Ann Coulter. This is one of those moments. She admitted recently that Republicans have to let go of some of their sacred cows since they lost the election — and risk losing any influence with the public going forward. From my latest column:
Americans support gay rights and increasingly believe that same sex couples should be able to marry. Most Americans think that Wall Street CEOs should not pay lower tax rates than their secretaries. Culture wars and class warfare in America? Conservatives built that. And lost.
Read the rest here. It’s a fun one.
Reacting to the faux outrage on the part of conservatives in America that by denouncing a reckless anti-Islam film, President Obama was somehow abandoning the value of free speech, I wrote the following for Salon:
A month ago, when an armed man attacked the Family Research Council in Washington, D.C., conservatives blamed the fact that the organization had been labeled a “hate group” for inciting the attack. Never mind that the hate group label was intended to condemn the sort of violence that the Family Research Council’s extreme homophobic vitriol encourages. Tony Perkins, head of the FRC, said that groups that labeled his organization a hate group should be “held accountable for their reckless use of terminology.”
But now, when an offensive anti-Islam film promoted by a right-wing Christian preacher is clearly to blame for violent riots spreading thought the Middle East and appeared to have played a role in the death of a U.S. ambassador and three other Americans, the far right in America is defending extremist rhetoric against Islam and attacking the Obama administration for condemning the inflammatory film.
I hope you’ll read the rest — and join me in marveling at the hypocrisy.
Appearing on Fox News to again defend the idea that religiously affiliated institutions with a primarily non-religious, public purpose should provide affordable contraception to their female employees, I asked the obvious: How come the same Christian extremists who are screaming from the rooftops about Obama imposing democratic laws on “religious freedom” take the exact opposite position when wanting to protect our laws from Islamic Sharia law? Hmmmm….
Here’s the clip:
So they took out the part that said African American kids were better under slavery. Hooray. Though as Mediate points out, the “apology” issued by the Right wing Family Leader was more of the “sorry you misunderstood us” type than a “damn, that was really f*ing stupid of us” type. Though I guess them Family Leader people don’t cuss.
In her “apology” Bachmann clarified that slavery is awful and ”economic slavery is also horrible.” Uh…. Take away that woman’s shovel. Or, if you’re the DNC, buy her a backhoe.
Meanwhile, let us not forget that the Family Leader is a front organization for Bob Vander Plaats, Iowa’s very own homegrown Right wing demagogue. Vander Plaats has called being gay a “public health risk” and regularly compares same-sex relationships to polygamy and incest. Perhaps worried that gay weddings would be more stylish and more fun than his own, Vander Plaats created the infamous pledge to protect marriage — which also protects women and girls (not men, though) from pornography and such, guards against Sharia Law because that’s coming to Iowa any minute, and inveighs against taxes and the federal government as hurting marriage (which is odd, considering the 1,100+ benefits that couples get for marrying, and the fact that conservatives have endorsed programs whereby government forces poor people to marry). The point is, even with the slavery stanza removed, this a deeply disturbing pledge and overall deeply disturbing agenda for any politician to sign.
Yet what’s more disturbing is that Bachmann is being increasingly treated as a mainstream candidate. This goes to the larger phenomenon of the mainstreaming of Right wing ideas — the fact that, just to give one example, our entire economy may be crashed because a very small Tea Party minority holds disproportionate sway over the Republican Party and, thus, our nation.
I worry that, in our reality TV-obsessed 24/7 short-attention-span culture, we give as much attention to salacious and even offensive opinions as we do genuinely substantive opinions — thus dangerously conflating the two. Arguably, Bachmann rose to national prominence in part because she was a heroine of the Tea Party but also in part because of her repeated, self-inflicted gaffes and crazy-talk. But fame is fame, right? Bachmann is proof that a crazy woman everyone knows about has more political cache than a whole bunch of dull, no name others.
Anyone else worried about the future of civilization?
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